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Fishers of Men Not Means

Through earnest prayer, I have seen God change so many circumstances in my life and the lives of people I love. More importantly, I have seen him transform me so that I am not bound to begging for a different outcome but rather a divine income.

For many years I thought the purpose of prayer was to get something from God. Now I understand that the hope of prayer is to get God. Just God, more of Him and less of me. His desires become mine, not vice versa when I sincerely seek Him.

Praying does not require fancy language. God does not give credit for style. He is looking for surrender.

Prayer changes everything. The thing is, change just does not always mirror our desires.

I have heard a couple of renditions of this misconception the last week, “I don’t understand, He didn’t answer my prayers.” He did, friend. He just answered them His way, and we are not called to comprehend but to commit.

If you are a parent and you make decisions that are best for your children, you know sometimes they are hard, but they are also right. Our kids most often do not understand. Hard and holy go hand in hand, though, and it has been that way since the beginning.

God understands our difficulty because He, too, is a Father. He is a person to know not a commodity to control.

Prayer sometimes changes earthly directions, but most importantly it alters eternal destinations, and that is our primary commission.

We are fishers of men not means.

If I can pray for you today, please let me know. It is my privilege to petition the Prince of Peace on behalf of my friends.

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Contentment

Growing in grace is finding joy at the juncture of what is and what we desire to be. Contentment builds her home there.

Friend, what person, plan or situation do you need to surrender to God’s sovereignty today? We are all Picassos, painting pictures in our minds of the way it should be, our way, our dreams. When we cling to our perfectly polished plans, we leave no room for God’s purpose to define our lives.

Perhaps we spend so much time longing for our coveted desires that we cannot enjoy our current destinations.

Our desires are not wrong, but our demands are. May we lay down our brushes and clear our canvases so that we can hang our hope on faith rather than fiction.

1 Corinthians 7:17~ And don’t be wishing you were someplace else or with someone else. Where you are right now is God’s place for you. Live and obey and love and believe right there. (The Message)

You are loved!❤️

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Open Hands, Designed Hearts

fe3beed03d166e8c0267c2d1efcd2a07Good morning friend.  Never lose your hope but lighten your hold.  We were never meant to cling so tightly to our people, our ideas, our dreams, or our desires.  God has been teaching me this lesson over many years.  It has not been easy learning, and at times it is completely painful.  I will never master remembrance of this under the sun, but while excellence is not possible, evolution is.  Our desires are not wrong, but when they morph into demands, they become problematic.  Lay that which is monopolizing your thoughts, managing your mind and forestalling your freedom at the feet of Jesus.  He longs to give you rest, but until we get out of the way, He cannot work.  Psalm 37:4 says~ Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.  Do not misunderstand as I did for so long; those desires will be His desires chosen for us that he will knit into our hearts so sweetly and softly until we realize them as ours.  Father, may we all open our hands today, letting go of our “perfectly” painted portraits so we may walk guided by your ethereal authority, not our erroneous aspirations.

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God’s Sovereignty Always Stands

cropped-img_1711.jpgWe all have to die to different dreams and realities every day.  Sometimes they are for ourselves, our children or someone else we love.  Those desires are hard to let go, and often we get up each morning and have to surrender them all over again.  It is painful.

There is a great hope, however, right in the midst of the death of our dreams.  We have this glorious gift of choice that affords us the ability to choose a victorious or victimized perspective.  If we frame our thoughts in victory, we can look our dying dreams in the face and say, that may not be an option anymore, but God’s sovereignty always stands.

Whatever dreams you are dying to friend, instead of fretting about their death, focus on their direction.  This is not always easy; I know!  However, believing in The Lord’s promise that He has a plan that will prosper all His children, (Jeremiah 29:11), we can face those dwindling dreams and say, Father I do not like this new picture, but I cannot wait to see your purpose.

Life is a lot lighter under His yoke!  (Matthew 11:30)  You are loved!  #selfiesermon #preachingtoself

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A Prayer for Replacing Panic With Prayer

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Father when things do not go according to plan as they often do not, I am prone to a default reaction of panic rather than a posture of prayer.  Panic leads me to fear and worry sending me spiraling away from You.  The further I become from you, the more responsible I feel to make life work on my own.  In my busyness to “manage” life, I become so distracted with misguided priorities that I neglect my time with you.  As your word recounts in Luke, call me “out of the kitchen” as you did Martha.  Place within me the heart of Mary that desires to sit fully surrendered at your feet and bask in your presence.  Amen.

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Parent’s Prayer

 

As the beginning of a new month and week dawns, bless all of us moms and dads, Father.  This parenting gig is hard, but you already know that.  You know every battle, grief, and gratitude of each parent.  Remind us these are not our children, but yours, God.  It is easy to beat ourselves up over their vices and puff ourselves up with their victories.  Give us wisdom to understand that while we play a role in every aspect of their lives; ultimately we cannot take responsibility anymore for their feats than their failures.  As it is with us, their struggles and their successes are yours, Father.  Us moms and dads, though, we bear them, too.  Performance becomes a heavy cross that burdens our hearts and blurs our gaze.  You often use the unexpected to change the expected.  We are prone to forget we are not in control, being quick to angst and slow to assurance.  Parenting is fertile ground for insidious places of unbelief to gain a foothold in our loving hearts.  Wrongly, “certainty” allures us into comfort and uncertainty into chaos.  May we remember we are our children’s earthly shepherds, not their eternal Saviors.  We play a part in the objective but do not direct the outcome.  In our limited insight, defeats can seem doom, and accomplishments are assuring.  These are the things that we use to misshape our peace and righteousness, Father.  Assist us in quick recognition and repentance of the deceptively, filthy rags we dress in.  Continue whispering in our ears; it is not about the accomplishments but You-The Author.  It is not about defeated paths but divine pictures.  We lose sight of this when it is all up to us, God.  That is just it.  We forget it is less about us and our “stellar” parenting and more about You and Your sovereign plan.  Allow us to love each child as you made them, not as we imagined them.  As try out season, course card decisions,  college and career selections, and so much more are all occupying our minds, God unburden our hearts with the weight of determined desires.  Allow our freedom from the obligation of expectations, and gift us with rest in Your destination.  Amen.